ABC Film Challenge – Sports – Z – Hidalgo (2004) Movie Review

This is under Z because of actress Zuleikha Robinson.

Director: Joe Johnson

Writer: John Fusco (Screenplay)

Starring: Viggo Mortensen, Zuleikha Robinson, Omar Sharif, Louise Lombard, Adam Alexi-Malle, Said Taghmaoui

Plot: In 1890, a down-and-out cowboy and his horse travel to Arabia to compete in a deadly cross desert horse race.

Tagline – Experience the incredible true story of a man who left behind the world he knew, and found the courage to do the impossible 

Runtime: 2 Hours 16 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Hidalgo starts when a famous down on his luck cowboy Frank Hopkins (Mortensen) and his horse Hidalgo a mustang has a reputation for winning long distance races through America. When Sheikh Riyadh (Sharif) learns of the name he has given his horse, he invites him to Arabia to race in a deadly cross desert horse race.

With the race underway Frank finds himself targeted by the locals, but he ends up getting involved with the biggest adventure of his life, building a connection with Sheikh and making history.

Thoughts on Hidalgo

ThoughtsHidalgo is an action-adventure movie that will see led his horse in one of the most dangerous races in the world to claim the title of greatest long distance racehorse on the planet. This will see a cowboy needing to come up against the odds as he uses his past to try and find victory, while building bridges with the locals who only see him as an outsider. While the core of the film is about the race, the journey and interactions will only make this a more engaging story. The performance from Viggo Mortensen is wonderful to watch, with him going against the odds to survive, with his relationship with the horse in the film coming off natural throughout.

Final Thoughts Hidalgo is a brilliant story about an adventure that will put racing on another level.

Jungle Run (2021) Movie Review

Director: Noah Luke

Writer: Marc Gottlieb (Screenplay)

Starring: Alyson Gorske, Richard Grieco, Jack Pearson, Jamie Petitto, Wade Hunt Williams

Plot: Sibling adventurers come under attack from jungle animals while searching for their missing father. As they fight back against the relentless onslaught, they soon start to realize something much more sinister is happening.

Runtime: 1 Hour 25 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Jungle Run starts when Amanda (Gorske) and her brother Scott (Pearson) hire Lebecq (Williams) to take them down the Amazon river as they search for their father who has suddenly vanished working for Vera (Petitto) company deep in the jungle.

As the group head deeper into the jungle they will find themselves coming up against the different dangers within the jungle, some deadlier than others.

Thoughts on Jungle Run

ThoughtsJungle Run is a movie looking to take advantage of the big blockbuster Jungle Cruise, where we have a pair of siblings traveling down the Amazon River in search for something, this time their father, even if there is a supernatural element behind what they are searching for. This is everything you would come to expect from the knock off version of a bigger movie, weaker story, worse effects all CGI animals for each different moment of peril, we get a different animal from the jungle, not the best acting and all and all, just sloppy. It is a film you could enjoy with a few drinks, get a laugh out of certain things, but by the end it isn’t going to be anything you remember for a good reason.

Final Thoughts Jungle Run is everything you would expect from a cheap knock off, of a big budget movie.

Jungle Cruise (2021) Movie Review

Jungle Cruise – Massively Fun


Director: Jaume Collet-Serra

Writer: Glenn Ficarra, John Requa, Michael Green (Screenplay) Glenn Ficarra, Josh Goldstein, John Norville, John Requa (Story)

Starring: Emily Blunt, Dwayne Johnson, Jesse Plemons, Paul Giamatti, Edgar Ramirez, Veronica Falcon, Jack Whitehall

Plot: Based on Disneyland’s theme park ride where a small riverboat takes a group of travelers through a jungle filled with dangerous animals and reptiles but with a supernatural element.

Runtime: 2 Hour 7 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Jungle Cruise starts when Dr Lily Houghton (Blunt) is trying to convince the British scientific community to go in search for a plant known as the ‘Tears of the Moon’ that is known to cure curses and any illness or injury. Needing to matters into her own hands, she is joined by her uptight brother MacGregor (Whitehall) as they head to the Amazon Rainforest in search of a boat.

Lily finds Frank Wolff (Johnson) a down on his luck captain who talks the talk, who reluctantly offers to take them down river, while they are being pursued by Prince Joachim (Plemons) who wants to petals for himself, as well as the cursed souls of Aguirre (Ramirez), Sancho and Melchor searching to end their curse.

Thoughts on Jungle Cruise

Characters & Performances – Dr Lily Houghton has been dismissed by everyone because she is a woman, she isn’t taking these rejections and looks to go on the adventure herself, being able to fight her way out of different situations, proving to be more resourceful than any of the men around her believe her to be. Determined and stubborn, she will get what she wants when it comes for making history being the strongest character in this film. Emily Blunt is fantastic in this role, being an adventurer that can handle themselves, easily on that performance that could be compared to Harrison Ford in Indiana Jones. Frank Wolff is a captain who owes a lot of money, filled with dad jokes but knowledge of the rainforest like nobody else. He does play into the conman style as he looks to get money out of tourists, needing to find a way to make Lily mission more difficult for her own safety. Dwayne Johnson is great in this role, the confident figure that will look to take advantage of people, while also not being afraid to poke a bit of fun at himself through the film. MacGregor is the high society brother of Lily, he is loyal to her even if he doesn’t like getting his hands dirty, the fish out of water role would be the best way to describe him. Jake Whitehall gets most of the laughs in this role, he will get to poke fun at somebody not being prepared for a rainforest adventure. Aguirre is one of the cursed men trapped in the rainforest looking to end the curse after centuries of being trapped here. Prince Joachim is searching for the petals as he believes it will help Germany win the war, he will bring the latest weaponry to the rainforest as he looks to hunt down Lily, knowing she has what needs for answers. Jesse Plemons is delightfully over the top in this role, boarding the crazed obsessed psychopath willing to kill anyone to get what he believes is his.

StoryThe story here follows a British adventurer that heads to the Amazon in search of a legendary flower that she wants to use to help cure illness around the world, only for her to learn the truth behind the legend and what it is really been hiding for all these years. This is a story that is based on a theme park ride, like what Pirates of the Caribbean did a few years ago. The story will easily get compared to Indiana Jones, The Mummy, Pirates of the Caribbean and many others in this style, it will have enough to just about make it have an original tone. The adventure itself is fun, with Lily and Frank breaking the typical molds in this world, while the villains don’t get flushed out enough, especially Aguirre and his men, who could have been haunting levels of villains instead of certain parts being played for laughs.

ThemesJungle Cruise is a big fun adventure movie that will see the dangers and beauty of the Amazon rainforest for everyone to see, having the supernatural side to it, playing into the legends that will have come before them. The creations of Aguirre, Sancho and Melchor are special effects heavy, showing how they have become part of the rainforest through the years. Each one gaining a weapon to fight back with.

Final Thoughts Jungle Cruise is a blast of an adventure movie that will have plenty of fun throughout.

Space Jam: A New Legacy (2021) Movie Review

Space Jam: A New Legacy – Lifeless sequel


Director: Malcolm D Lee

Writer: Juel Taylor, Tony Rettenmaier, Keenan Coogler, Terence Nance, Jesse Gordon, Celeste Ballard (Screenplay) Juel Taylor, Tony Rettenmaier, Keenan Coogler, Terence Nance (Story)

Starring: LeBron James, Don Cheadle, Cedric Joe, Khris Davis, Sonequa Martin-Green, Zendaya, Jeff Bergman

Plot: A rogue artificial intelligence kidnaps the son of famed basketball player LeBron James, who then has to work with Bugs Bunny to win a basketball game.

Tagline – They’re all Tuned up for a rematch.

Runtime: 1 Hour 55 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Space Jam: A New Legacy starts as basketball superstar LeBron James (Himself) is looking to stay connected to his children with Dom (Joe) dreaming of something outside of basketball, Darius (Wright) looking to follow in his footsteps. Warner Brothers algorithm Al G Rhythm (Cheadle) wants to bring LeBron into become the face of the latest project Warner 3000. After LeBron rejects the offer, Al drags Lebron into the game to challenge him to a basketball match for his freedom, leaving LeBron to look for a new team, taking him to meet Bugs Bunny and the rest of the Looney Toons.

Thoughts on Space Jam: A New Legacy

ThoughtsSpace Jam: A New Legacy is looking recapture the magic of the original film with a new basketball star in LeBron James, who isn’t on the international levels of Michael Jordan, can’t act and looked lost for most of the film. The idea does bring the transportation into the modern era, by mixing the damaged relationship between LeBron and his son Dom who wants to build a game, rather than play basketball, with an evil AI that wants to control the world, bringing us the evil characters against the Looney Toons. The game between the characters goes into super moves and other gaming nonsense, which only confuses the game. The animation does look clunky for the most part. The fact that this is nearly 2 hours long is even more shocking, if clearly doesn’t need to be. We also fall into the trap that Warner Bros seem to be doing, that involves throwing all their owned materials for lazy references, that seem to be more for the adults.

Final Thoughts Space Jam: A New Legacy is a lazy sequel to a cult classic.

Edge of the World (2021) Movie Review

Edge of the World – Simple History Lesson

Director: Michael Haussman

Writer: Rob Allyn (Screenplay)

Starring: Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Dominic Monaghan, Ralph Ineson, Hannah New, Josie Ho, Bront Palarae

Plot: The adventures of Sir James Brooke, who defied the British Empire to rule a jungle kingdom in 1840s Borneo, embarked on a lifelong crusade to end piracy, slavery and head-hunting, and inspired LORD JIM and THE MAN WHO WOULD BE KING.

Runtime: 1 Hour 44 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Edge of the World starts as Britain’s Empire had continued to span the globe, with Sir James Brooke (Meyers) leading the latest expedition to a new land of Borneo, with Arthur Crookshank (Monaghan) by his side they find the new land and the Pengiran Indera Mahkota (Palarae).

As James Brooke starts to adapt to the country, he starts to see himself being considered the King of the land, looking to make sure the slavery is stopped within the country, but it doesn’t go as smoothly as he would like, with enemies from every direction.

Thoughts on Edge of the World

Characters & Performances – Sir James Brooke is a traveller representing the British Empire in the 1800’s, he has arrived at a new land, wanting to know how the people of Borneo operate, to help continue to build the British Empire in new lands. He is trying to stop slavery, piracy, all to create an equal land, despite learning about the barbaric methods the country uses. Jonathan Rhys Meyers does bring this character to life, showing him not to be an evil conquer, but someone who wanted to learn. When it comes to the other characters we get Arthur and Charlie that have travelled with James, they both have different ideas of what is needed to be done, one wants change, one wants to learn. One of the problems you will find in the film, is the lack building of the supporting characters and what they truly want from the new land to them.

StoryThe story here follows Sir James Brooke as he leads the expedition of Borneo looking to learn their culture and finding himself in the middle of a war between people on the jungle island, where he must look to bring peace to the land, while trying to prevent the British Empire taking advantage of the land. This is a history lesson like story, that does show the first few days or weeks on the island, before a big moment to try and change things, which is fine. The problem will come from not really seeing the bigger work he is meant to have achieved, which is only shown through the written material at the end of the film, which could have been larger interesting aspects of what happens.

ThemesEdge of the World is a history drama adventure about Sir James Brooke and how he tried to stop slavery, piracy and head-hunting in Borneo, the locations look brilliant, being the biggest highlight of the while film.

Signature Entertainment presents Edge of the World on Digital Platforms 18th June and DVD 21st June


Edge of the World is a basic history lesson that does seem to skip over the bigger moments of the life.